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About The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923 | View Entire Issue (Aug. 21, 1908)
V3BBSliEE8, OT'ffiiBR Jj
sptecll as areN pert&enfto thfrtiscusgiolSr'it is not necl)ssaryvto reab
his remarks in full'. .,.,-, .
It will be'notib'ecl' tharthe-EepuBlican party has "abandoned thtf
earlier arguments advanced' in support of a higHnariff. We hear
no," more of the "Infant Industries," that must be tenderly cared
for "until they can stand upon their feet;" there is no suggestion
that the "foreigner pay the tariff," and nothing about the-"home-market."
These catch phrases have had their day they are worn
out and cast aside. The Republican leaders are no longer arrogant
and'insolent; they cannot longer defy tariff reform. Theirphurnow
is to seem to yield without really yielding.
I submit that the Democratic platform accurately described" the
Republican position when it refers to "the belated' promise" made
by the Republican leaders as "a tardy recognition of the- righteous
ness of the Democratic position on this question.' The Democratic
party in its platforms and through its representatives " in Congress
has for years pointed out that the tariff schedules are excessively
higlf and ought to be reduced, but the' Republicans have, until re
cently, refused to admit that' there was any necessity for reduction.
They now confess, through their platform and through their presfc
dential candidate, that the need for revision is so great as to' justify
the party in declaring "unequivocally for a revision of the tariff"
and the need is so urgent that the work is to be undertaken at" "a
special session of congress immediately following the" inauguration
of 'the next president." The use of the word "unequivocally" indi
cates that those who wrote the platform recognize that they are
nnder suspicion. They want to distinguish this promise from the
unkept promises of the past by adding as emphatic an adjective as
J could be found in the dictionary. If former Republican promises
tofituS strengthen the promise made this year. The use of the words
'immediately after the inauguration" is evidence that the Repub-
KcSrleaderg are conscious that the patience" of the public has' been
sirjSned to the point of breaking, and it is almost pathetic tcrote'
the solicitude which theynow'fe'el abotft doinga thing wliibfi but
for wilful neglect, might ha've been doife'atf any timeMurihttiVlastf
Are we not justifiectaynig'that' "thepeoplevcannot safely 'en
trust the execution of 'this impoftaht'worlcto a'arty wli&n'Js'so
deeply" obligated to the hignly protectetOntefests as is the Repub
lican Party"? The "fat-frying" process" has' be'cbme'tamiliar'toniie'
iilmerican people. Pressure has been brought to bear' upon tfifcpfd
"xi$""A i "'-- -- -d - o-i-v r-A . 0. loo cA-ccuo iif &ne'" con
gressional campaigns between presidential elections to compef con
tributions to the campaign: fund in return4 for fdrmer favors and in
anticipation of favors yet to come; It is ' difficult tor' overestimate
the corrupting influences introduced intc the" political life of ' tnVna-
has studiously cultivated' the" idea that suffrage should be enririffrftA'
to secure pecuniaryreturns, and the appeal made'by'the Republican
leader has come to "be more and more a selfish one. Every 'man- en
&$$M a .protected industryhas been approached witlr the probtf
sitoon that it is dollars in his pocket to maintain' the" system; while
tfe0 , could not possibly- tractf any tangible benefits to them!
aejves have been beguiled with the assurance that it was'all a matter'
of public spirit and that they ought td support the system: out of
patriotic love of country If attention was called td the fact tnat
the farmer was taxed for the benefit of the manuf acturer, the triple
answer was that it would come back to him indirectly; that it Set
not amount to much for each farmer anyhow; and that a' mart was'
small minded wlio would' begrudge so insignificant a contribution
to the nation s prosperity. The plan has been to keep thV tatf-rifrs
ers quiet by keeping them in the dark as to the operation of'the lawT
T5ffT "' w-u.vj.dv, wijguigeu. Ail iUXS JJlOClU
WZJZZ LTOeeLP e.tariff- It was also-asstffletf that
theu wages reduced, and' it jas expected that the busings- metf of
tte town wpnld also Vote for the tariff' because o Hid tiusiniyre
T&lk c??. Protected IStay. idso
'", ."v,V"""":u wltIf "le, lai "gut Know to what an extent' tHe' tip
gum argument has Ueeri used'. The WtBSS
f Mvfe call to every beneficiary of $? S?B
i r : . " j .r- --'w wwuiuia uuvjiz iiii iiiimiuv: rnn irT i - - - - iz-- j'
foolate to make tHie information valuaM 5J & WuMd' S ik
Mffuam party , toiii so, obligated1 feft M SeS
t burners "" a' Sibn' &
With a PresJli wn'6; tWiCrd te cl'os rf to fevMi' ,-jI A'
Necessity for U0 i tittA id J 40Sdl OSSf Af
j iinci eariy sixif to' A' IOTfelSgift9&
refiised'to permit any revision-whatever." MrWilliams the-leader
of the-mmority in the House introduceda bill providingfor a re
ductibn of the tariff to 100 percomt wherever it is now more than
100 percent. It would1 look liltethe-Repnblicampartjrmight have
taken this step' toward tariff revision, had it been deeply in earnest'
but no, the bill was-not even reported from the committee. When
ever attention was called to an indefensible schedule, the answer
was that they could not afford to open the subject for debate just
before a campaign, but there is no force in this-objection because
the House rulesr are so framed' that the majority can cut off debate,
prevent amendment and silence opposition.
The administration has claimed credit ftnrthe fine against the
Standard Oil Company in the case, which was lately reversed, but
no-effort has been made to relieve-the people from the fine which 13
imposed upon them every day by the Standard Oil Company through
the- operation of the tariff law which gives that-company more than
100 per cent protection against its chief rival, Russia. What faith
can a real tariff' reformer, whether he be a Republican, or a Demo
crat, repose in the Republican leaders, when theyileHberately put
offralI reduction until after election, an'dthencall for contributionsr
with thev understanding that the public shall-not know the names of
the contributors until after the1 polls &r closed?
The Republican platform says that the tarift is. intended for the
American manufacturers,' farmers and 'prodscersj-and especially for
the wage earners. If the farmer and the wage earner are really the
chief beneficiaries of the protective system will the Republican can
didate explain why the farmer and the wage earner have contributed
so little to the Republican campaign fund? Is-he willing to publish
a list of contributors on the 15th day of nexIT October and allow the
relative advantage of protection to- the manufacture the farmer
and the wage earner to be measured by the contributions received
from each class? Why is it that the manufacturers' are expected to
furnish so large a proportion of the money to- rum the campaign, if,
as'the'Republicans claim, the farmers' and the laborers" enjoy so large
a proportion' in the benefits of thesystem? Is- it not a significant
fact that the farmers andf wage earners who artf nlways put in the
foreground' whenthe blessings- of arliigh tariff-Taref being, enumerated
are in the- background wheri the collections'" are' being- made? Is it
not significant that the manufacturers, who furnish, the funds, are
so' little advertised as beneficiaries? Is it not significant, also that
tlie Wage earners, instead of the manufacturers; are always"described
as' f themost direct beneficiaries of the protective system? "
But let us'supposefor the'sake of argument, that the Republican
party sincerely repents of its delay nr beginning tarifTreform, re
pudiates its obligations to the contributing manufacturers- and hon
estly begins a ''revision.' ' Wnatmle isrto govenr the revision?
The' Republican platform' says':
"In all: tariff legislation, tfie true principle-of-protection-is. bast
maintained' by the imposition of suchduties' a,wilLequaLthe differ
epteVweeiL the cost of production at home and- abroad- together
with; a reasonable prctfit to American industries."
Mr. Taft endorses this rule and says that "in a number of sched
ules the tariff now exceeds4his-difference, and. that the-excess offers
a temptation to those who would monopolize the production and
sale of such articles in this country." He-add however; that "there
are some few articles on which the tariff" is not- sufficiently high to
w-i?6111 the measure of" protection thy should: receive;'
WiU he explain upon what rule the present -tariff was framed?
When have the Republicans- claimed' more: protection! than: enough
to cover the differenced the- cost of: production here-, and abroad?
1'ne reasonable profit to- American' Industries." is. an: addition 0
Aere is Eky to e used aa'n excuse fbrraisingrthe tariff.
And, by the way, to what other busmess: does-the government guar
antee a 'reasonable profit"? Tb the farmer, or the. merchant or the
laborer? To none of theso, If in revising the. tariff' the: Republican
party is to work upon exactly the-same-, plan- (or a. plam contemplat
ing a higher rate), what hope havtf we' that ther new- tariff will "jb
lower than the present one? Are thev present leaders more honest
tnan the ones who"' framed the existing' tariff?" Are they not.
intact, the same men who- are'; responsible: for tariff extortion-
during the last decade? R this- new-bom: zenT for re
vision were an nundre times- greater than, his! notification: speecii
indicates; what chanca would' the: Republican, candidate have
of securing- nny reap tariff- reform, at tfa: ha-nte nfT nmTi raMioans
as now Represent? that? party in the Senate: and, House? the very mm
wuu xcMi-eawiwa it. m- i;ne recent national' ccJnvenfaon: Sbealffir Can
Hbn; wild- has suppressed' &rifit lfegfcitnaon: in. tlie present? congress,
wus a dbminating factor in the cdnventidn and',, flftfie Rfepubiicans
retain- cbiiWcl of thd House:, wiffi be the Speaker atf ie; next aon
ef: Jr'?ln hl prominence atfortf tariftT reformers, an-w ansurancii
a S-rS11' of 1 aii;n1 &' file, infevedtt 6$ tlie:- consumers Br custi
i5eSS:11(ia? to.1 GdngTessman Sliermant wilfl BecomE the- pr-
a J Sf frJ? 1 mQ' toena??- aa beem iSto confi'dentih;!! enmamon
??$$$$ $& aild k& cwiwenrtfibni itt was fSaestsr Chmmii
wuu- voucnect' ior num jsmi ai ft watitev off fe, Bfic aifetam
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